Archive: August 26th, 2002

Signs

I was watching the trailer for the new M.Night Shyamalan film "Signs" which led to the website for the film.

It’s a very well put together Flash site that manages to convey a real sense of spookiness. It sold me on the film.

After immersing myself in all the crop circle mythology there, I thought it would be interesting to see what the circlemakers think of all this.

You see, the circlemakers make crop circles. It’s as simple as that.

Some people have tremendous difficulty believing that fact. Some people find it more credible that crop circles are the result of extra-terrestrial intervention or a manifestation of some unspecified energy in the earth. This, despite the fact that the circlemakers explain quite clearly how anybody can make their own crop circles.

Why would anybody continue to believe in the more incredible explanations when a perfectly rational one exists?

Well, it is a lucrative business. If you’re a self-proclaimed crop circle expert, or cerealogist, you can get yourself on the lecture circuit and even appear in "documentaries" like "Crop Circles: Quest For Truth" due, coincidentally, for release at the same time as "Signs".

Besides, some people just "want to believe". The credulity of cerealogists in the face of evidence from the circlemakers reminds me of the case of the Cottlingley Fairies.

In 1917, two young girls presented photographs to the world that apparently showed them together with fairies in their garden. Many years later, the girls, now old women, admitted that they had faked the whole thing using paper cut-outs. Yet, some people continued to believe that the photographs were real.

I guess when you really want to believe in something, you can explain away anything that appears to contradict that belief.

I’d love to hear the cerealogists explain this one.